Cancer Commons has already explored the possibility of using the combined forces of web users’ knowledge to create an open database of potential treatments for the disease. Aiming to move medical research out of niche journals and into the public domain, Cureus is a platform for anyone conducting trials to publish their results straight onto the web.
Focused around a community of members consisting of both doctors and patients, the main goal of Cureus is to get peer-reviewed research out to interested parties more quickly than the journal system currently in place. Instead of submitting work to publications, waiting to hear if they are successful and then finally getting their research in print – which only guarantees exposure to that particular journal’s readership – the site enables medical researchers to publish their work within a week and gain instant feedback from other professionals in the community. Patients can also view their work for free and give feedback through the platform. Each piece is given a ‘SIQ’ score from the site to give readers an indication of the quality of the research.
All researchers maintain copyright of their work but are able to get it out to a wider audience at a faster pace, enabling quicker responses from other research and ultimately more timely treatments for patients. Is it time that medical journals were brought into the world of the social web?